Seattle Mariners’ Tim Lopes, center, avoids Houston Astros catcher Martin Maldonado to score a run during the eighth inning of a baseball game Sunday, July 26, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Seattle Mariners’ Tim Lopes, center, avoids Houston Astros catcher Martin Maldonado to score a run during the eighth inning of a baseball game Sunday, July 26, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

MARINERS: Lewis’ clutch single in the 8th hands Seattle first win of the year

HOUSTON — Kyle Lewis hit a tiebreaking two-run single in the eighth inning to lift the Seattle Mariners over the Houston Astros 7-6 on Sunday, snapping a 15-game losing streak in the series.

The Mariners trailed by one run entering the eighth before Shed Long Jr.’s run-scoring single tied it at 5-5 with one out.

Long stole second base with two outs before Lewis, who homered in the first two games, knocked a ball thrown by Chris Devenski (0-1) into right field to score two and put the Mariners on top.

Seattle went 1-18 against Houston last season and lost the first two games of this season to extend the skid.

Dan Altavilla (1-0) pitched a scoreless eighth to pick up the win. Taylor Williams allowed a two-out, RBI, ground-rule double to Michael Brantley in the ninth before striking out Alex Bregman for his first career save.

Houston starter Zack Greinke came two outs from a no-hitter in his last regular season start, which was against Seattle on Sept. 25. On Sunday, Lewis spoiled his bid much earlier, singling with two outs in the first.

Kyle Seager doubled to score Lewis before scoring on a single by Evan White to make it 2-0.

The Astros cut the lead to one in the bottom of the inning when Bregman hit an RBI double to left field but was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double to end the inning.

Mallex Smith and Long both hit RBI doubles in the fourth to extend the lead to 4-1.

The Astros loaded the bases with no outs in the fourth with two walks and a single by Brantley.

Yuli Gurriel’s RBI single got Houston within 4-2. Yusei Kikuchi struck out the next two batters before his bases-loaded walk of Josh Reddick cut the lead to one run.

Martín Maldonado then sent a ball skipping down the third base line for a single that scored two to put Houston on top 5-4 and end Kikuchi’s day.

Maldonado has five hits and six RBIs in the first three games. He’s the first MLB catcher to have six or more RBIs in the first three games of a season since Brian McCann also had six in 2007.

Kikuchi yielded five hits and five runs with four walks in 3 2/3 innings.

Greinke allowed four hits and three runs while walking two in 3 1/3 innings.

Trainer’s Room

Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander, who beat the Mariners in the season opener Friday, has a strained right forearm and will be shut down for at least two weeks.

Astros manager Dusty Baker announced the injury after Houston’s 7-6 loss to the Mariners on Sunday.

Baker denied a report that said the injury would end Verlander’s season. He said Verlander would be evaluated after two weeks.

Up Next

Seattle’s Kendall Graveman will make his first appearance in 807 days when he starts against Josh James as the series wraps up today (4:10 p.m. ROOT Sports). Graveman last pitched on May 11, 2018, and missed the rest of that season and last season recovering from Tommy John surgery. James returns to the rotation after spending last season in the bullpen.

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